4.4
Credible rating
Credible lender ratings are evaluated by our editorial team with the help of our loan operations team. The rating criteria for lenders encompass 78 data points spanning interest rates, loan terms, eligibility requirement transparency, repayment options, fees, discounts, customer service, cosigner options, and more. Read our full methodology.
Rates and terms
Fees and Discounts
Customer Experience
Custom Choice Private Student Loans
Fixed APR
Lowest fixed rate available from this lender
3.75%+
Variable APR
Lowest variable rate available from this lender
1.08%+
Loan amount
Total amount you can borrow from this lender
$1,000 to $99,999 annually ($180,000 aggregate limit)
Loan terms (years)
How many years you have to repay the loan
7, 10, 15

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Best for:

  • Borrowers who need a small loan
  • Borrowers with past-due education balances
  • Borrowers who want to make payments while in school

With Custom Choice, borrowers can take advantage of both the 0.25% autopay discount plus a 2% principal reduction for graduating with at least a bachelor’s degree.

For a limited time, new Custom Choice applicants can receive an additional 0.50% interest rate reduction during the Summer Savings event, which runs through August 31, 2021.

In this Custom Choice student loan review:

Custom Choice interest rates and loan details

If you’re considering a Custom Choice Loan, here’s what you need to know:



Credible rating
4.4
Rates from (APR)3.75%+
Variable rates from (APR)1.08%+
Loan amounts$1,000 to $99,999 annually
($180,000 aggregate limit)
Loan terms3 and 5 years
Min. credit scoreDoes not disclose
Min. incomeDoes not disclose
Residency
  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Not available to residents of AZ, IA, or WI
FeesNo application, origination, or late fees
Prepayment penaltyNone
Key benefits
  • 0.25% autopay discount

  • 2% principal reduction for graduating with at least a bachelor’s degree
  • Can use funds to cover past-due balances
Enrollment
  • Must be enrolled at least half time in a degree-granting program at an eligible school

  • Available for undergraduate and graduate students
Cosigner releaseApplications accepted after 36 consecutive, on-time principal and interest payments
Loan servicerAmerican Education Services
Best if
  • You need a small loan

  • You have past-due education balances
  • You want to make payments while in school

A Custom Choice private student loan could be best if:

  • You need a small loan. With a Custom Choice Loan, you can borrow as little as $1,000 up to $99,999 annually. This could be helpful if you need to cover small expenses, such as college textbooks or fees.
  • You have past-due balances. You can apply for a Custom Choice student loan up to 12 months after you’ve left school to cover past-due balances.
  • You want to make payments while in school. Custom Choice provides multiple in-school repayment options, which could help you put a dent in your debt and reduce the overall cost of your loan before you leave school.

Learn More: Is My College Housing Covered by Financial Aid?

Custom Choice student loan review

The Custom Choice Loan is funded by Citizens and comes with fixed- or variable-rate options.

You can borrow $1,000 to $99,999 annually and up to $180,000 in total with a seven, 10-, or 15-year repayment term. These funds can be used to finance undergraduate or graduate school costs — such as tuition, housing, and other living expenses.

Check Out: Private Student Loans and COVID-19: What You Need to Know

How to qualify

To qualify for a Custom Choice private student loan, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Undergo a credit check
  • Provide proof of income
  • Not permanently reside in Arizona, Iowa, or Wisconsin
Tip: Many students don’t yet have the credit history to get approved for a private student loan. If this is the case, consider applying with a creditworthy cosigner to improve your chances. This could also help you qualify for a student loan if you have bad credit.

Even if you don’t need a cosigner for approval, having one could get you a lower interest rate than you’d get on your own.

Learn More: Taking Out Student Loans Without a Cosigner

Repayment

Custom Choice offers four different repayment options. These include:

  • Immediate repayment: Your first payment will be due 30 to 60 days after your loan is disbursed. The minimum payment is $50.
  • Interest-only repayment: You’ll pay the interest that accrues each month while you’re in school, then make full payments six months after you’ve left school or dropped below half-time enrollment status.
  • Flat payment: You’ll pay a flat $25 payment while you’re in school. Keep in mind that any interest accrued during this time will capitalize at the time of repayment. This option is available only for loans of at least $5,000.
  • Full deferment: You can also choose to defer your payments while you’re in school at least half time. Like with the flat payment option, any interest that accrues will capitalize at the time of repayment.

Additionally, borrowers who have a cosigner can apply to release them from the loan after making 36 consecutive, on-time principal and interest payments. Keep in mind that borrowers need to meet underwriting criteria on their own to qualify for cosigner release.

Tip: If you lose your job, the Custom Choice Loan offers unemployment forbearance that can pause your payments for up to two months (maximum of 12 months over the life of the loan).

Check Out: How Long Does It Take to Get a Student Loan?

How does the Custom Choice Loan compare

Here’s how the Custom Choice Loan compares to private student loans offered by two of Credible’s other partner lenders:

 






Rates from (APR)Fixed:
3.75%+

Variable:
1.08%+
Fixed:
3.19%+

Variable:
1.83%+
Fixed:
2.99%+2,3

Variable:
0.99%+2,3
Loan amounts$1,000 to $99,999 annually
($180,000 aggregate limit)
$2,001 to $200,000$1,000 up to 100% of cost of attendance
Loan terms (Years)7, 10, or 155, 7, 10, 12, 15, or 20
(depending on loan type)
5, 8, 10, or 15
Cosigner release?Applications accepted after 36 consecutive, on‑time principal and interest paymentsApplications accepted after 24 consecutive, on‑time paymentsApplications accepted after 24 months of consecutive, on-time payments
Loan servicerAmerican Education ServicesLaunch ServicingUniversity Account Service (UAS)
Best for
  • Borrowers who need a small loan
  • Borrowers with past-due education balances
  • Borrowers who want to make payments while in school
  • Borrowers with fair credit
  • Borrowers who want flexible loan terms
  • Borrowers who don’t have a cosigner
  • Parents who want control over funds
  • Choice of repayment terms
  • Multiple plans for in-school repayment

Lowest APRs reflect autopay, loyalty, and interest-only repayment discounts where available | 1Citizens Disclosures | 2,3College Ave Disclosures | 7EDvestinU Disclosures | 8INvestEd Disclosures | 9Sallie Mae Disclosures

Learn More: Banks That Offer Student Loans

How to take out a Custom Choice Loan

Depending on your needs, the Custom Choice Loan could be a good option to help you pay for college. But before you decide, it’s a good idea to consider your options from as many other lenders as possible — this way, you can find the right loan for you.

With Credible, you can compare your prequalified rates from Custom Choice and other vetted lenders in just two minutes.

Compare student loan rates from top lenders

  • Multiple lenders compete to get you the best rate
  • Get actual rates, not estimated ones
  • Finance almost any degree

See Your Rates
Checking rates will not affect your credit

Check Out: Credit Unions to Consider When Taking Out a Student Loan

How the Custom Choice Loan can improve

While Custom Choice offers several perks, it could improve by:

  • Working with borrowers nationwide: The Custom Choice Loan isn’t available to permanent residents of Arizona, Iowa, or Wisconsin.
  • Offering a 20-year loan term: The longest repayment term the Custom Choice Loan provides is 15 years. If you want a 20-year loan term, you’ll need to consider other lenders.
  • Raising its loan limits: With the Custom Choice Loan, you can borrow only up to $99,999 annually. Custom Choice Loans also have a $180,000 aggregate limit that includes both private and federal student loans. This might not be enough for borrowers attending more expensive programs.

Learn More: How to Get a Student Loan With No Credit Check

Other lenders to consider

If you aren’t eligible for a Custom Choice private student loan, there are plenty of other lenders to consider, including:

Before you take out a private student loan, remember to compare as many lenders as you can to find a loan that works best for you. Credible makes this easy — you can see your prequalified rates from several vetted lenders after filling out a single form.

Find Your Student Loan

Why Credible

Our hope is that this will be a win-win situation for you and us — we only want to get paid if you find a loan that works for you, not by selling your data. This means Credible will only get paid by the lender if you finish the refinancing process and a loan is disbursed.

Additionally, Credible charges you no fees of any kind to compare your refinancing options.

Keep Reading: 5 Steps to Take If You Can’t Afford College

About the author
Taylor Medine
Taylor Medine

Taylor Medine is a Credible authority on personal finance. Her work has been featured on Bankrate, Experian, The Balance, Business Insider, Credit Karma, and more. She’s also the author of The 60-Minute Money Plan, a self-published intro to budgeting guide for people who hate budgeting.

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